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Technology

Urban Chinese see AI having far-reaching effects, Tencent poll shows

Nearly 80% say smart machines will transform industry but undermine privacy

Chinese tech group Baidu featured the Xiaodu robot at the 2015 Baidu World Conference in Beijing.   © Reuters

BEIJING -- More than three-quarters of city dwellers in China expect artificial intelligence to affect every aspect of life in a survey released Friday, even while roughly as many voice privacy concerns.

The poll by internet services provider Tencent Holdings and the state-run China Central Television found that 77.8% of respondents see AI pervading the economy. Meanwhile, 76.3% believe that AI could threaten privacy.

Over half of respondents, or 50.4%, said AI is already affecting them at work or in their personal lives. Another 40.8% reported feeling no impact but think that they might in the future.

Nearly a third, or 31.7%, already feel that AI is threatening their jobs. And 50.6% do not sense a threat but think this could change.

The sector where respondents most expect to see AI used is automotive transportation, at 59.2%. Medicine and health care comes next at 45.2%, followed by education and training at 40.5%.

The survey targeted more than 8,000 urban residents aged 16 to 60.

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